It was October 2016, I was a few weeks off the PCT and already looking at other hikes I could attempt (in between submitting job-applications). That's when I stumbled upon this project, "Unbounded", here was a group of 4 travelers attempting the largely unheard of "Greater Patagonia Trail", while creating a documentary about the experience.
For those who aren't familiar with the Greater Patagonia Trail, or GPT, it is a network of trails, gaucho/arrieros paths, roads, trail-less routes, bushwacking, and rivers spanning from Puente Alto down towards the Southern Icefield. The trail currently totals around 3,000km and the full network is mapped at around 12,000km. More details can be found on the trails wiki here. Needless to say it's pretty gnarly, the trail is still growing, has no support network like the US thru-hikes, and is all at the mercy of the notoriously fickle Patagonian weather systems.
After following the audacious project for over a year and a half, the crew completed roughly over 700km of the 3000km, and was able to produce the documentary. While ~ 700km may sound paltry to us US thru-hikers; it shouldn't... this is a totally different beast. The GPT has never been completed in a single season, and honestly, it should it be. The GPT is more about immersion hiking than thru-hiking; meeting and spending time with the people as you go, providing a deeper understanding of this unique land and culture. To hear it from a Triple-Crowner who has also completed the GPT over 2 seasons check this out.
I have had the good fortune to able to view the film, as one of their Kickstarter backers, and highly recommend it to anyone who's interested in thru-hiking, adventure, or Patagonia. It truly lived up to the expectations I had for it after keeping tabs on the project for over a year and a half. It covers not only the adventure aspect that is inherent on a backcountry trek; but it also details the lives of the locals and touches on larger themes of conservation in the region. Everyone should check it out!
The film is now touring the country with upcoming showings in Jackson, Austin, Boulder, and Hadley MA.
You can check out a screening near you here!
- D.L. Three years into my quest to find a copy of Dolores LaChapelle’s , I was finally on the cusp of unearthing the elusive tome. My search had led me to Powell’s Books, in Portland, Oregon, and as I closed in on my quarry, I felt the weight of a multi-year journey begin to lift. Out of print since 1993, was — and is — hard to find, and over the years the volume has gained legendary status as one of the best philosophical/academic examinations of powder skiing ever written. Today,
Kit DesLauriers' career is an extraordinary medley of firsts: The first person to ski the Seven Summits; first female to win back-to-back Freeride World Tour championships; first female solo of the Grand Teton; first ski descent of Mt. Isto (the tallest peak in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge) … the list goes on. She has one of the most impressive ski mountaineering resumes of anyone on the planet, male or female, although DesLauriers humbly describes her life as "doing what I love
2,000 feet above the Yosemite Valley floor with her hands jammed into a undercling, the last thing Lynn Hill needed was to lose her footing. It was 1993 and she was in the middle of the Great Roof, a taxing 5.13c pitch of El Capitan’s Nose featuring a granite slab that juts out from the wall. To succeed at this technical section, she had to navigate a nearly featureless rock using only a thin crack in the granite for a hold. Hill now clung to that crack–measuring about a quarter-inch wide–as